It is not as scary as some would make you think. Dating can be fun; it’s all about being smart during the process. Like all things you decide to do, the first step is to do your research. We all have a type we are drawn to, whether it’s athletic, intellectual, free-spirited, humorous, adventurous, or a number of other personality traits and attributes—we like what we like.
Make a mental list of your “must-have”s, but be reasonable and flexible. You might miss out on that right person just because they didn’t satisfy number 12 on your list. This is not your grocery list but a wish gallery of features that would assist the two of you in becoming a couple if the other person possessed them.
When you have your list, and you know what you want, now it’s time to figure out the best ways to meet that certain someone who fits your desired criteria. There are a number of ways to get your mojo by trying a few of these Atlanta tips for dating.
Dating sites are one way to meet someone. There are many in Atlanta that will introduce you to people close by. Do a search online and be specific with your search information. You can ask your friends to set you up with one of their co-workers or a friend of a friend.
Chance meetings are a good pond of activity—check out your local grocery store patrons, while running daily errands or on that shopping spree. How about that local coffee shop in Buckhead where you keep seeing that mysterious stranger every time you visit and you’d like to know him/her better? So many options!
Take a stroll in the local park and keep your eyes open or visit your gym and, in between those stomach crunches, keep your peepers peeled for the guy/gal working out beside you. Casual settings with friends are always a good place to start.
Now, once you have found a few possibilities who could be potential dates, what’s next? A conversation is the right step for your next move. Conversations are really easy for some, while others struggle tremendously and would rather take a marshmallow cream bath then have to start up a conversation with someone.
What do you say or how do you say it? Keep it simple! Start with a nice smile and a simple hello. If the other person smiles back, then give your first name and ask for theirs. If the other person seems annoyed by your starting a conversation with them while they’re working out or shopping, try something funny.
For instance: At the gym, you could say, “Do you always shop here?” Or, at the grocery store, you could start with, “It’s quite the workout trying to decide on a cereal.” Well, funny might not be your forte, but anyone can say hello and introduce themselves.
Once you have a conversation going, the next step is to ask if they would like to grab a coffee afterward. This is an easy way to break the ice. If they have other plans, you can exchange numbers and set a time to get together on a future date. A slight word of caution here: be prepared for being “ghosted”—an unfortunate side effect of meeting someone in a chance happening.
Ghosting, for those of you who have not heard of this term, is when someone disappears on you. Much like they were never there to begin with—ghosting away. This can happen when you go on a first date, too. The date was great, you had fun at the best bistro in Midtown Atlanta, but you never heard back from your date. All you got was a text, and then complete silence, silence, and more silence—also known as ghosting.
Why are people so afraid to take a chance?
Once you have the first date set, be safe around Atlanta. People in the South are super friendly, but you are in a big city, so be cautious. When you don’t know each other that well, the best thing to do is meet at a neutral spot, halfway in between your work or home.
You want to take separate transportation: take a taxi, Uber, or MARTA—easily found, with stops all over Atlanta. This is smart to do until you get better acquainted.
Don’t give out your home address or personal information, in the beginning. This person, after all, was a stranger to you before your date, and you need to have time to develop trust. It is so much smarter to err on the side of caution, first, and let things unfold at a slower pace.
Once you know each other better, and you both feel safe about the direction of the relationship, you can start to share more personal information. It’s like an onion—one layer at a time, and try not to cry in the process.
Now you can start exploring the possibilities of a relationship. Be respectful of each other’s time and give kindness—that goes a long way. Show how you like to be treated by treating the other person in the same way. Grow the relationship one date at a time and always be careful with each forward step. You have to crawl, then walk, before you can run!